Meet Coach Casey

December 20, 2018

We are challenging community members to “Get Caught” moving Battle Creek forward through job creation and training; talent development; and community vitalization.

Read on to learn more about a past recipient, Casey Bess.

Meet Casey

You probably know Casey better with the word “Coach” in front of his name. Coach Casey is a teacher and the football coach at Battle Creek Central High School who started a new tradition with his team. 

The Tuesday Tradition

After one practice Coach Casey said that he was hungry, and his player John replied, “Me too, Coach”. So, Coach and John went down to Clara’s; from that one dinner, around 6 players joined in on the Tuesday Tradition.

Coach Casey seats his students in the center of Clara’s so that the public can see what great players he has, and so that the players can gain experience in a nice restaurant in a public setting.

Keeping the Tradition Going

As more students wanted to join in on the team dinners, Casey admits funds stretched a little bit. “I was already shoveling money into a box just to pay for John.” Casey reached out on Facebook, asking if there was an interest to sponsor the student athletes. He was surprised at those who wanted to support his students.

“Two of my longest friends, guys that I went to school in BCPS K-12 with that now live in Washington DC and Chicago, both messaged me and said they wanted to sponsor a kid each week. To me that is so cool! These are 32-year-old men that are in big jobs, in big cities, starting families, and they are worried about helping us in Battle Creek.”

Casey averages about $25 per student to cover the cost of the meal and tip.

The Best Part

Coach Casey’s favorite part of the meals? “I love to hear about their dreams and what they want to do. I get to hear their struggles! They get to hear mine! It reaches beyond athletics and my job as their teacher and coach. I’m trying to help raise productive men!”

We applaud Casey, his football team, and the sponsors of this awesome tradition for “Getting Caught” doing amazing things for the Battle Creek Community.

Do you know someone who is helping move our community forward? Nominate them today by emailing

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